Sunday, July 6, 2014

Easy Oven-Baked Lemon, Garlic, and Rosemary Chicken

The end result. First thing. Anybody hungry for some chicken? ;)

Part of the fun of this recipe for me is that I'm constantly changing the way I cook it a little bit here and there.

-Chicken (I usually buy Organic, Vegitarian Fed, Free-Range, Hoopty-Scooty Chicken Breasts...Yep, they're gonna cost you more. I figure if I'm dedicating as much time and energy as I am into my food I want to keep it as high quality as possible, especially my meats. Meats are one of the main staples of my diet as a Paleo eater! As far as quantity goes, in this batch I cooked four breasts.
-Lemons (It's more or less up to you how many lemons you want to use. For the batch I made in these pictures I used four lemons, one per chicken breast. Probably a bit on the heavy-lemony side. Experiment!)
-Fresh Rosemary (Optional -- It adds a beautiful smell and a nice taste to the chicken, but by all means you don't need it for this to work. You really just need chicken, a pan to put it in, and an oven to cook it in).
-Fresh Garlic (Optional -- Again, this adds some flavor. And it's fun mincing it into little pieces.)
-Olive Oil (Optional -- I like to rub down my chicken with Olive Oil. It adds a nice little crust/flavor the the chicken.)
-Other Spices (Optional -- Playing with spices is fun! For this batch I took out a little bowl and mixed the following spices together: Black pepper, sea salt, thyme, basil, and sage.)

1. Preheat your oven to somewhere between 400-425. Half of the time I forget what exact temperature to cook it at. Tonight I settled on 415 ;). You always want to make sure you cook your chicken thoroughly. My basic test is cutting a little piece of chicken off and making sure it's not pink at all, or sticking a fork in and making sure the juices run clear.
2. Break out your pan and line it with tin foil. You don't *need* to line it with tin foil, but it makes clean-up so much easier!
3. Cut your lemons into somewhere around half-inch slices. I usually get about 3-5 slices from a lemon.
4. Optionally mince your garlic into little pieces (I'll make a whole post on how I prepare garlic soon -- basically just cut it into tiny little pieces).
4. Spread the majority of your lemon slices around the bottom of the (tin-foil lined) pan. Optionally sprinkle some of the minced garlic around as well. Add a couple sprigs of the fresh rosemary to the bottom of the pan.
5. Time for some chicken goodness. Open your chicken up and (optionally) rub it down on both sides with olive oil. Not too much, not too little, just give it a good oiling ;). Optionally sprinkle on and rub in your spices on both sides of the chicken as well. Place it in the pan on top of the lemon slices. Then add the remaining lemon slices on top of the chicken along with (optionally) one or two (or three) sprigs of fresh rosemary. If you have any garlic left, sprinkle some of that good stuff on top of the chicken.
6. Put it in the oven and let it cook for 45 minutes - 1 hour. If you're cooking a *lot* of chicken it might need a little more time. Just make sure to test it. I cooked the pictured batch for 45 minutes at 415 degrees and it was perfect.
7. Take it out and cover the pan with tin foil. Let it sit for about 5-10 minutes. This is hard for me (and sometimes I absolutely dive right in) because I'm usually super hungry and want to eat the chicken right away! Covering the pan helps the chicken steam a little bit and retain some more moisture.
Attempting to not eat the freshly-cooked, totally fabulous, delicious, wonderful...chicken =).
I love to add steamed veggies to...almost everything. In this picture I steamed some local zucchini and fresh broccoli. 
8. Let any leftovers cool a little bit and then store them in your fridge/freezer for easy-access to deliciously cooked chicken. (I usually let them cool for 10-20 more minutes, pop 'em in a glass storage container, put a lid on it and put it in my fridge for later consumption).
Storing the left-overs. I use them in salads cold, or throw them in a pan/steam them to warm them up for a future meal. The tongs are a recent addition to my cooking tools arsenal and wow..I feel silly saying this, but they *really* help!
You, my Paleo friend, just rocked the socks off some chicken! Impress your friends, invite them over for a home-cooked meal. I always feel all gourmet and happy after I eat this recipe. It's one of my favorites!

My full dinner for tonight. I found some local "tom cot" apricots at the Woodinville Farmers Market. They taste like natures candy. Sometimes I wonder if all the sugars from the fruit I eat are bad..but then I compare it to how I *used* to eat (entire roll of cinnamon rolls, half a cake, etc.) and I don't worry anymore. They're local, they're wholesome, organic...delicious!
I don't always do dessert. Actually, a lot of the time I skip it without even thinking about it. Tonight I had *just* baked some of these delicious Dark Chocolate Rainier Cherry Muffin Brownies. I couldn't resist :-).

As always, thank you for reading! I want to hear from you with any questions, comments, or suggestions you may have! Enjoy another Paleo meal made with love!

Yours truly,
The Simple Paleo Cook

No comments:

Post a Comment

Questions? Suggestions? Comments? I want to hear from you!